Katrina Belle, 28, experienced sudden episodes of memory loss in July 2021, resulting in non-epileptic seizures and temporary paralysis – she is now hoping to go to the US for treatment
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A ‘healthy’ woman couldn’t get out of bed after being struck with paralysis, seizures and memory loss.
Katrina Belle worked at a spa and lived a normal life until July 2021, when she was struck by sudden episodes of memory loss that escalated into non-epileptic seizures and temporary paralysis.
The 28-year-old has been told she has a functional neurological disorder and is now unable to work or even get out of bed.
Katrina says she felt ill last summer – when she hadn’t had a cold for three years.
Her symptoms began with brain fog and rashes, but then progressed to horrific episodes of complete memory loss. MyLondon reports.
One day, while she was walking, she experienced her first fight.
She said: “I was just so confused. [I thought] ‘Where do I go?’ I looked around and tried to make out the place.
“I just couldn’t see it and had a moment of panic. I’ve walked this path about 1,000 times but I couldn’t remember where I was walking.”
In August, she tried to go on vacation, but her fatigue and memory loss caused her to run into obstacles at the airport.
She said: “I went to the airport – I wasn’t there – I missed four flights and left my suitcase on the train.”
Katrina says she went through a terrible internal struggle.
She added, “I looked like I was having fun and doing, but I was really struggling, like I was really struggling.”
Upon returning to London, Katrina’s mental health deteriorated due to her symptoms.
She says she even cut off communication with her friends.
She explained: “I deleted Instagram, I deleted all social media, I didn’t reply to anyone and for two weeks I was just in my bed. It was so bad.”
She joined a gym to improve her mental health, but in November she experienced her first episode of paralysis and she was found on the floor, unable to move or speak.
An ambulance was called and she was taken to the hospital for MRI and CAT scans.
Doctors initially thought she had suffered a stroke, but along with her other symptoms, she was diagnosed with a functional neurological disorder.
The NHS says symptoms can include loss of motor control, sensory symptoms, speech problems, attacks or seizures, visual symptoms and cognitive problems.
It’s called functional symptoms because, according to the NHS, they affect how the body “functions” and is not caused by damage to the “structure” of the nervous system.
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Sent to physical therapy to manage symptoms, Katrina underwent multiple tests and attempts at physical therapy before being discharged from the hospital.
Since then, however, Katrina has developed other debilitating symptoms on nine separate occasions, including an aversion to certain foods, blood in her ears, sensitivity to noise, and temporary paralysis.
She said: “I had nine cases of paralysis all over my body… found on floors, like in the kitchen, at my friends… [One time] I was stuck outside at a station at night. I just couldn’t walk anymore.
“And there were strangers who just looked at me and said, ‘What’s going on?’ And then my friends picked me up. So often and it was so scary.”
She added: “I want to scream anytime. I just want to scream.”
Katrina created one GoFundMe Page to go to a Regenerative Medicine Clinic in Los Angeles, California for customized stem cell treatments specific to their needs.
She admits she will struggle to make the 14-hour flight, but is desperate for help.
Katrina explained, “I just feel like it’s getting worse every month and I’m just worried. And I’m just scared.”
However, the clinic is costing £3,000 a day as it hopes to raise enough money to bring a woman in her mid-20s back to life.
Discussing how much she wants the treatment, Katrina said, “It would mean happiness to me. I would get my luck back.
“I wouldn’t scare my family anymore because they’re petrified of seeing me like this.”